10 of the Most Glamorous Places to Ring in 2019
An estimated one million people will flock to New York’s Times Square to witness the famed ball drop, but that’s far from the only place to ring in the new year. Luxury hotels and restaurants around the globe are hosting glamorous gatherings for a high-spirited yet sophisticated celebration. Whether you want to raise a glass over a sensuous feast, experience a warm-weather getaway, or dance the night away at a dress-to-impress party, there a slew of chic destinations from which to choose. But book now—2019 will be here in ten . . . nine . . . eight . . .
1. L’Atelier de Joël Robuchon, New York City
We may have lost celebrated chef Joël Robuchon this year, but thankfully his legacy of celebrated fine dining lives on at his Manhattan eatery’s Grand Gala. The evening’s nine-course tasting menu will be a triumph of haute cuisine, complete with a champagne toast, DJ, and dancing.
2. Helena Bay Lodge, New Zealand
Host the private party of a lifetime at this luxury lodge in coastal Northland. Set on 800 acres of farmland, the lodge offers a main house and villas available for a New Year’s Eve buyout. Guests will be treated to a multicourse celebratory feast prepared by chef Michele Martino, as well as a breathtaking fireworks display. You can also enjoy on-site hiking, tennis, or kayaking as well as excursions to local wineries or a helicopter ride to Poor Knight’s Island for diving.
3. Burj Al Arab Jumeirah, Dubai
Enjoy an over-the-top New Year’s Eve at one of the world’s most opulent hotels, which is hosting the five-day “Under the Stars: Gold Edition” package, from December 28 through January 2. From camel rides to a Hollywood-worthy fireworks display over the Arabian Gulf, the Burj Al Arab pulls out all the stops—including transport in a chauffeur-driven Rolls-Royce and complimentary tastings in the resort restaurants Scape, Al Iwan, and Nathan Outlaw at Al Mahara.
4. The Gleneagles Hotel, Scotland
Celebrate in black tie at this five-star hotel. Kick off the day with a Trackman Combine Test at the Golf Academy, followed by an outdoor treasure hunt, air rifle shooting, Scottish country dance lessons, or champagne tasting. Then toast the Hogmanay (the Scottish New Year) with a special “Beating of the Retreat” in the front hall followed by live music in the Century Bar and a 2 a.m. feast in the Gleneagles Suite.
5. Faena Miami Beach, Miami
Fresh off its Art Basel festivities, this colorful hotel rolls out the red carpet for a massive New Year’s Eve fête. Tango dancers greet revelers at the gilded cathedral as they make their way to a multicourse dinner at one of the award-winning restaurants: Savor osetra caviar, Maine lobster tail, and smoked Wagyu tenderloin with shaved black winter truffle at chef Francis Mallmann’s Los Fuegos or Miyazaki A5 Wagyu carpaccio, Alaskan king crab rice with foie gras, and 72-hour smoked short rib asado with truffles at Pao by Paul Qui. Then sip champagne at the Tree of Life, watch fireworks, and hear live music near Damien Hirst’s golden mammoth.
6. Cliveden House, London
Everyone from Lady Astor to Meghan Markle has visited this exquisite British estate set on 376 acres of gardens and woodlands. To ring in 2019, Cliveden House is throwing an epic two-night Gatsby-esque party. The event includes a posh afternoon tea, champagne reception, black-tie dinner, Scottish piper, and accommodations fit for a royal.
Contemporary art and Michelin-starred fine dining are just a few of the upscale amenities at this esteemed Paris hotel, reimagined in 2010 by designer Philippe Starck. Enjoy champagne and food pairings in one of the rooftop igloos, then continue on to the chef Nobu–helmed Matsuhisa Paris. During your stay, you can also arrange exclusive gallery tours across Paris with the on-site Art Concierge, visit the hotel gallery and contemporary art bookstore, arrange a screening in the private Katara movie theater, or swim a few laps at the longest hotel pool in Paris.
8. The Watergate Hotel, Washington, D.C.
Give them something to talk about by welcoming the new year at this landmark of political scandal. After a massive $200 million renovation by famed designer Ron Arad, the Watergate Hotel reopened as a bastion of glamour—with a wink to its storied past. (Scandal‘s Emmy Award-winning costume designer, Lyn Paolo, helped reimagine the historic room 214 in period-perfect style, complete with binoculars, a manual typewriter, and reel-to-reel tape recorder.)
9. The Polo Bar, New York City
Designer Ralph Lauren’s iconic Manhattan restaurant hosts a four-course prix fixe dinner menu that starts with enticing dishes such as Kumamoto oysters with golden osetra caviar and citrus sauce, seared foie gras with walnut-cranberry bread, or mâche salad with quince chutney followed by mouthwatering entrées like Nantucket Bay scallops with celery root agnolotti, brussels sprouts, and black truffle; Dover sole with golden osetra caviar and Meyer lemon butter sauce; and a Montaigne burger with black truffles and Boissière-Ecole brie. A three-piece band will play throughout the night, and a champagne toast with dessert will round out the enchanting evening.
10. Palácio Tangará, São Paulo, Brazil
Leading Brazilian design firms Bick Simonato and Anastassiadis Arquitetos crafted this European-style hotel in São Paulo, which is adorned with exciting artworks, including the lobby’s Papéis Avulsos, a suspended sculpture by Laura Vinci reflecting fluttering leaves, and gorgeous depictions of the Amazon rain forest within the Burle-Bar. Indulge in a five-course tasting menu at chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s Michelin-starred restaurant Tangará and gala in the Crystal Ballroom, then recover the next morning at Palácio Tanagrá’s Flora Spa, which bears the prestigious Sisley signature.